HOMffiOPATHY: WHAT IS IT ? Who has not heard of Homoeopathy? From the German centre in which it originated, this strange med- ical doctrine, with its stranger practice, has diffused itself, in sixty years, throughout the civilized world. In the United States alone, it has between two and three thousand educated practitioners. It is a vast and grow- ing power in the scientific sphere of thought, demanding earnestly the attention of every intelligent man. Its real merit may be partially measured by the strength of the obstacles it has overcome. In the beginning every thing was against it. The doctors ridiculed it ; the people dis- trusted it. It was assailed alike by professional jokes and by doggerel poetry. The novelty of its principle, the smallness of its dose, the extravagance of its claims, the dogmatism of its founder, the eccentricities of its adher- ents and the exactions of its practice, all conspired to retard its reception. It then had no colleges to teach — no hospitals to verify — no journals to disseminate its discov- eries. How changed is all this at the present day! It had also to contend against the weight of authority, the prestige of great names, the power of prejudice, the influence of fashion, an immense commercial and corpora- tion interest in the old order of things, and the pre-occu- pation of the whole ground by a powerful, learned and 6 jealous profession. These are still its real and only ene- mies : not truth, or light, or reason, or science or nature. Independent and candid physicians came slowly to J its rescue. The indolence of some, the timidity of others, and the self-interest of all, impelled them in the conserv- ative direction. Still the heresy grew. When there were not physicians to urge it upon the people, there were people to demand it of the physicians. Its vitality was indestructible. Persecuted from one place, it sprang up in another. Extinguished here, it ignited there. When one man rejected it, a dozen adopted it. Thus on, on it went, until it became what it is, which is only a prophecy of what it will be. Time has falsified the predictions of its enemies, but has not softened their bitterness. When they said it was declining, it was just wakening into life. When they declared it was dying, it was growing into power. And now that they swear it is dead, it is likely to prove immortal. And yet. my good reader, what is Homceopathy? It has excited a great deal of public attention and private discussion. Every Allopathic professor ventilates the subject annually to his credulous class, and every Allo- pathic physician portrays its follies and its dangers to his restless patients. Nothing is so much talked about, and nothing so little understood. The "regular profession" universally sees it in a false light. It is indeed a curious subject. There is some truth in every thing which has been said against it, and some weakness in every argu- ment which has been propounded for it. And still the Homoeopathic law of cure — "similia similibus curantur" — is the vivifying principle of scientific medicine — the grand thought which is to revolutionize the medical world. It is worth studying. I have the ambition, and I think I have the power, to explain to you what Homoe- opathy is ; what it really professes to be and to do ; its essential nature and necessary limitations — without a particle of theorizing — in a plain, practical and convinc- ing manner. What if it be not Hahnemannism, the Homoeopathy of the past ? Reflect candidly on my views and ask yourself as you read, Is not this the Homoeo- pathy of nature, of reason, of common sense — the Homoeopathy of the future ? DEPARTMENTS OF PRACTICE NOT HOMCEOPATHIC In the first place : Homoeopathy is not a new and perfect Science of Medicine. It is no new gospel, no new revelation to the medical world. All such claims are preposterous. It is not Science, but a part of it. It is not Medicine, but a grand reform in one of its depart- ments. It has no new Anatomy or Chemistry or Physi- ology or Pathology. It has no new Surgery or Obstet- rics, although it has made great improvements in the medical treatment of surgical and obstetrical cases. It does not reject the accumulated experience of ages. It is not "the grave of scientific medicine," but its cradle. It holds fast to all that is good in the storehouses of the past. Every fact is of use to it. Every truth is in sympathy with it. It repudiates nothing but error. The whole cycle of sciences, physical and psychological, is necessary to its full and final development. Secondly : There are many measures (not medicines) valuable or indispensible in the treatment of disease. Such for instance as relate to the proper and scientific regulation of temperature, light, air, water, food, exercise, habits and the various influences which modify our mental and moral life. There, too, is the vast realm of Hydro- 8 pathy — a therapeutic world in itself — the operation of hot and cold water, of ice, steam, vapor, local and general bathing, packing, etc., etc. Electricity, also, galvanism, magnetism, mesmerism, kinesipathy and chrono-ther- malism, are no doubt exceedingly valuable in the treat- ment of many diseases. All these are not Homoeopathy. They neither exclude it, nor are they excluded by it. They constitute a grand collateral department of the Healing Art — in the most friendly alliance with the homoeopathic administration of drugs. Thirdly : Homoeopathy does not interfere with the use of mechanical measures, nor even with the use of drugs for certain mechanical purposes. Vomiting may expel a poison from the stomach, a gall-stone from the biliary ducts, or a false membrane from the windpipe. The Homoeopathist may thus use emetics for their mechan- ical effect. Ergot to empty the uterus, belladonna to dilate the pupil, chloroform to relax the muscles, sulphur ointment to kill the itch-insect, vermifuges to destroy and expel worms, and in certain cases astringents, dilu- ents, emollients and protectives, (such as collodion,) are examples of drugs being used to bring about certain mechanical ends, all admissible in the strictest homoeo- pathic practice. Purgatives in some cases of great intes- tinal obstruction or torpor, become simple mechanical agents. Even blood-letting, as a mechanical measure, is perfectly allowable to the Homoeopathic physician. He does not use it simply because the superiority of his med- icine enables him to cure his patient without it. " Let your lancet rest," said a distinguished Homoeopathist, "but do not throw it away." Fourthly: There are chemical means of cure often available, and which act according to the laws of inor- ganic or organic chemistry, as the case may be. The antidotes for many poisons are used on this principle, and, of course, in the doses found requisite by laboratory experiment — a certain quantity of antidote being required to neutralize a certain quantity of poison. How often have we Homoeopathists had to answer the silly question, whether or not we treated arsenical poisoning by small doses of arsenic? Examples of chemical therapeutics are the following: Acids and alkalies for excess of alkalinity or acidity in the gastro-intestinal or urinary secretions; vegetable acids for scurvy; alkalies to dissolve inspissated mucus in some bronchial affections ; certain remedies which modify the chemical condition of the blood ; iron for an impoverished state of that fluid, phos- phate of lime when deficient in the bones; chlorine, char- coal, lime, creosote and other antiseptics to arrest or prevent putridity, etc. This is not Homoeopathy; neither is it Allopathy. It is vital chemistry, operating by special laws of its own, and equally free to the advocates of any system of medicine. THE HOMEOPATHIC PRINCIPLE OR LAW. Having thus briefly surveyed those departments of practice in which Homoeopathy, as such, does not profess to operate, we can approach more understanding^ to the far greater and more important field in which it gives us the sole law of cure. The only point of dispute between Allopathists and Homoeopathists is about the vital or dynamic action of drugs, and their application in the cure of disease. What is a medicine? Given to the healthy man, in sufficient dose, it is always a poison. The Greeks had but one word for medicine and poison. That drugs have any special healing, mollifying, curative 10 effect is merely a popular superstition. Every drug is a poison, and it cures by means of its poisonous or disease- producing properties. Every dose of medicine occasions, beyond all dispute, an artificial disease. This artificial disease is the secret of the cure. Every dose of medicine given by an Allopathist to cure a sick man, would, if he were well, make him sick. Let this great truth, so ignored by the profession, so unknown to the public, be kept con- stantly in mind. The idea is very ancient. An old Sanscrit poem declares that poison is the remedy for poison. The homoeopathic law peeps out even in Hip- pocrates, the father of medical literature. It is hinted at, or sometimes openly declared, in the saws and axioms of almost all the nations. Shakspeare, who caught up every thing which was true and beautiful by a kind of divine instinct, thus teaches us Homoeopathy : "In poison there is physic: and this news, Having been well, that would have made me sick, Being sick, has in some measure made me well." [Henry IV, Part 2, Act 1, Scene 1. Never forget it. Drugs always produce artificial dis- eases. These artificial diseases are the mediums of the cure. Where shall they be produced and to what extent ? These are the only vital questions. The Allopathist, in accordance with certain theories of disease and its cure, employs the poisonous properties of drugs to produce certain physiological perturbations, vomiting, purging, sweating, increased or diminished secretions, narcosis, depletion, stimulation, etc , etc., which he believes will effect his object. His general idea is to produce a state opposite to that already existing. The Homceopathist repudiates all this theory and practice, and affirms that diseases are cured by those drugs which produce similar 11 diseases, in strong doses, on the healthy man. Both par- ties use poisons to cure. The situation, extent and char- acter of the poisoning or artificial disease are the only mooted points. A slight, similar, morbid impression in the diseased spot, is the simple and beautiful law of Homoeopathy. The Allopathist, having no such thera- peutic law — nothing but his crude and often contradictory theories to guide him — produces very strong morbid impressions, sometimes similar, and sometimes dissimilar ; sometimes in the diseased point, sometimes in distant points ; often in both. Sometimes one of his medicines produces one set of these symptoms, whilst another medi- cine produces the other. Sometimes a second medicine is required to undo what he had effected by the first. He pulls down, only to build up again. Now he blows hot, then cold ; and so on. In fact, his philosophy is a labyrinth and his practice a chaos. Hahnemann states our therapeutic law in the following terms: "A dynamic disease in the living economy of man is extinguished in a permanent manner by another, that is still more powerful, when the latter (without being of the same species) bears a strong resemblance to it in its mode of manifesting itself." Leaving out the unnecessary and unestablished hypothesis, that the new disease is stronger than the old one, this formula is the most practical and beneficent generalization which has ever been made in the science of medicine. A dynamic natural disease (not a mechanical or chemical deviation from the normal standard) is best cured by producing a similar (not the same) dynamic disturbance in the same parts and tissues, which therefore manifests itself by simi- lar symptoms. This is the only " indication" in Homoe- opathic practice. This is the clue which leads us out of 12 all the old labyrinths of speculation and experiment, and makes available the disease-producing power of drugs. Now this is the fundamental idea of Homoeopathy, its true basis, its corner stone, its only essential element. All other questions — of large or small doses, of pellets or tinctures, of dynamizations, of what Hahnemann said, of wliat this or that disciple said or did, of imagination, or diet, or nature, or imposture, etc., etc. — all these ques- tions and many other such, have no bearing on the point under trial, and are altogether collateral and impertinent. No matter what solution they receive, Homoeopathy remains intact, vital, indestructible and sure to be the medicine of the future, unless you overturn this grand pedestal, this natural or vital law, on which it has been erected. It is only the small fry of Allopathy, knowing little and thinking less, who attempt to ridicule this principle, "similia similibus curantur " — "Like cures like." The great leaders, the intelligent men of their school, although attacking our system just as bitterly on the unimportant side-issues, do not dare to impugn the truth of the fundamental law. They content themselves with attempting to limit its applications. Witness the following evidence from the very highest Allopathic authorities. THE LAW PROVED BY ALLOPATHIC EVIDENCE. " When Hahnemann promulgated this therapeutic formula, " similia similibus curantur" he supported his assertions by cita- tions from the practice of the most illustrious physicians. There is every proof that local inflammations are frequently cured by the direct application of irritants, which cause a similar inflammation ; the artificial irritation substituting itself for the primitive one." — Trousseau et Pidoux, Traite de Therapeutique, Tome 1, page 470. " Supercession. By this process is meant the displacing or pre- vention of one affection by the establishment of another in the seat 13 of it. It is a general, though by no means a universal pathological law, that two powerful diseases or forms of abnormal action, cannot exist in the whole system or in any part of it at the same time. If, therefore, we can produce a new disease or new mode of abnormal action in the exact position of one that may be existing or expected, we may possibly supercede the latter; and if the new disorder sub- side spontaneously, without injury, we cure our patients. The operation of numerous remedial agents may be explained in this way." — Wood's Therapeutics, vol. 1, page 54. " Upon this ground we are disposed to suggest the use of strychnia in tetanus ; not that we have become followers of Hahnemann, but that it is a simple and undeniable fact, that disorders are occasion- ally removed by remedies which have the power of producing similar affections. It is quite unnecessary to explain this fact by an arbitrary principle, that one artificial irritation excludes a spon- taneous irritation of the same kind. A more rational ground for an expectation of benefit from Homoeopathic remedies may be found in the consideration, that such agents prove by their occasional pro- duction of symptoms like those of the disease to be treated, that they act on the part which is the seat of the disease, and conse- quently that there is a probability, that in their operation on that part (whether it be to the extent of producing a similar disease or not) they may effect a beneficial change. Oil of turpentine, for in- stance, having been known to produce a discharge of bloody urine, might be rationally administered in a case of spontaneous hema- turia.— Dr. Symouds' Article on Tetanus, Cyclop, of Pract. Medicine, vol. 4, page 375. For myself, I accept the above paragraphs as a very fair exposition of the principles upon which I practice what is called Homoeopathy. Out of the mouths of the most intelligent and independent "regular" physicians, I can establish the truth and rationality of the Homoeopathic law. I might multiply quotations by the dozen, but the above are sufficient. We differ, not as to the nature, but as to the extent of this great therapeutic principle immortalized by Hahnemann. Our Allopathic friends give it a subordinate place : we insist upon its suprem- 14 acy. They acknowledge its partial influence : we main- tain its universal applicability in the vital sphere. If they would abandon their unproved theories of disease, their perturbative measures of cure, their experimenta- tion upon the sick, instead of upon the healthy, for their knowledge of drugs, and apply their own philosophy to practice, with a discreet diminution of all their doses, they would soon discover for themselves the universality of the Homoeopathic law. The great truths of Homoeopathy are sometimes acknowledged by Old School thinkers in other shapes and under other hypotheses. Take for instance the following passage from a splendid work on Pharmacology, (vol. 1, page 32) by Prof. Geo. B. Wood, whose admirable lec- tures I attended twenty years ago in the University of Pennsylvania: " The sensibilities are often different in health and in disease, so that the same medicine may produce opposite effects in these two states. Thus, cayenne pepper, which produces in the healthy fauces, redness and burning pain, acts as a sedative in the sore throats of scarlet fever. A concentrated solution of acetate of lead, applied to the denuded skin or to a mucous membrane, acts as an irritant ; while the same solution, very much diluted, will operate as a seda- tive through the peculiar powers of the medicine." Leaving out his theory of " different sensibilities," " opposite effects," "stimulant action," " sedative action" — all mere hypotheses, good examples of the vicious, the- orising propensities of the Allopathic school — what are the naked facts which Dr. Wood here acknowledges? That acetate of lead produces a severe irritation of the healthy tissues, whilst a very much diluted preparation of the same substance cures a similar irritation ; that cay- enne pepper produces a burning sore throat in the healthy man, but cures the same kind of a sore throat in the sick 15 one. Yes, Prof. Wood ! push your own teachings here to their logical issue, and they will lead you into all the great truths and therapeutic blessings of Homoeopathy. Arsenic concentrated will inflame the stomach ; diluted, will cure a similar state. Colocynth concentrated will purge and gripe ; diluted, will relieve the same symp- toms. Cantharides concentrated will produce strangury ; diluted, will cure it. Belladonna concentrated will con- gest the brain ; diluted, will relieve a brain already con- gested ; and so on, and so on, through the whole Materia Medica. What further proof do we need of the truth and rationality of the Homoeopathic principle ? Indeed, who does not see that the opposite doctrine, " contraria contrarils curantur" — " opposites are cured by opposites " — has no foundation in reason or nature ? •It is a phrase or an idea accommodated to the shallowness of our untutored thought : just as we say, "the sun sets," when yet science teaches us that the sun never sets, but that his appearance and disappearance depend upon the revolutions of the earth. There are no " opposites" in any such sense as this ancient medical heresy suggests to the mind. Cold is not the opposite of heat, but its nega- tion ; darkness is not the opposite of light, but the effect of its withdrawal ; ease is not the opposite of pain, but its absence •, weakness is not the opposite of strength, but the want of it ; a slow pulse is not the opposite of a rapid one, but its diminution. Inflammation, neuralgia, dropsy, vomiting, purging, etc., have no "opposites." Drugs pro- duce no "opposites" to these morbid states, but only more or less inflammation, neuralgia, dropsy, vomiting, purg- ing, etc. Allopathy is dissipated by analysis. Homoeo- pathy, " similia similibns, v more or less accurate, more or less scientific, more or less freed from collateral impedi- ments, is the final issue of all medical progress. 16 PHASES OF THE HOMEOPATHIC LAW. There are three branches or classifications of the Homoeopathic principle when applied to practice, each of which it is important to consider. 1st. When we produce a similar morbid impression in the diseased organ, we practice direct, irritative or sub- stitutive Homoeopathy. This includes nine-tenths of our daily use of drugs : it is pure Homoeopathy. 2d. When we produce a similar morbid impression in a distant healthy part, in sympathetic relationship with the diseased part, so that the morbid impression is reflect- ed or communicated by nervous transmission from one to the other, we are practicing indirect, sympathetic or trans- positive Homoeopathy. 3d. When we produce a morbid impression in healthy parts to prevent or exclude an approaching or threatened similar affection, we practice what may be called preven- tive or anticipative Homoeopathy. DIRECT HOMOEOPATHY. The most obvious illustration of direct, irritative, or substitutive Homoeopathy is found in the common treat- ment of those local diseases which are within the reach of our hands and instruments. The use of caustic or irri- tant eye-washes to inflamed eyes, of nitrate of silver to sore throats or to the neck of the uterus, the introduc- tion of medicated bougies, of stimulant injections, as in hydrocele, ascites, etc. ; and the application of blisters, caustics, iodine, etc., to ulcers, erysipelas and other cutaneous affections, are examples in point. Whatever explanatory theory may sway the mind of the physician, the ultimate fact is, that a similar artificial disease has been induced in the diseased tissues. The Allopathist 17 has perhaps not reflected on the essential point of simi- larity. But how can it be otherwise ? Can he cure an inflammation by producing a neuralgia in the part ; or a hemorrhage, by occasioning a dropsy ; or a convulsion, by bringing on a cough ? He will find that all of his local applications to diseased points are themselves irritant, and he will perfect his practice by making their use as homoeopathic as possible. By an easy and natural step we pass from this point to another, which is the most important and perhaps the most novel one in our whole exposition. Homoeopathic medicine is but an extension to the invisible interior of the body, of the therapeutic principle which the Old School finds so efficient in the local treatment of disease. There is no reason why inflammation of the brain, liver, heart, lungs, bones, or any deep seated organ or tissue, should not be as readily modified and cured by direct irritants, as similar morbid states in the capillary system of the eye, throat, the urethra, or the skin. If the Allo- pathists could have cauterized the brain, lungs, liver, etc., they would have done so long ago ; and, reasoning from analogy, with every prospect of success. Now nature has provided us with a vast number of specific caustics or irritants to every organ and tissue in the body. By means of the well-recognized specific affinities of drugs for certain organs and tissues, we can produce artificial diseases in any given point of the body. What nitrate of silver is to the throat or eye, belladonna is to the brain, cantharides to the kidney, arsenic to the stomach, tartar emetic to the lungs, calomel to the liver, nux vomica to the spinal cord, etc., etc. That idea leads you into Homoeopathy. But how shall we compel nature to render up to us the 18 secret of these glorious specifics? By long and painful experimentation upon the sick, the Old School has stum- bled upon the homoeopathic uses of a good many drugs. Mercury for syphilis, copaiva for gonorrhea, sabina for uterine hemorrhage, calomel for inflammations of the mucous membranes, tartar emetic for pneumonia, rhubarb in diarrhea, ipecac for vomiting, nux vomica for asthma, quinine for intermittent, tonics for debility, alcohol for delirium tremens, and turpentine in urinary diseases, may- be cited as illustrations of the fact. Almost all the so-called "alteratives" of Allopathy cure upon homoeo- pathic principles. Individual physicians have here and there, now and then, used almost every drug on homoeo- pathic principles: but the above specific applications have received a very general endorsement from the pro- fession.' When Allopathic physicians use those drugs in the above mentioned diseases, they are practicing a crude bungling Homoeopathy, with too large doses, however ignorant they may be of the fact. Samuel Hahnemann enriched the science and reformed the practice, of medicine, by discovering the true way to get at the specific operation of drugs. Whilst engaged in translating Cullen's Materia Medica from English into German, he was struck with the darkness which sur- rounded the action of Peruvian bark. The idea occurred to him, that the true way to solve the mystery and to ascertain the pure and unadulterated power of drugs, was to take them in large doses when in perfect health. With a wonderful spirit of honest research, and a noble self-sacrifice, he took Peruvian bark until it produced in him an attack of intermittent fever, for which it is spe- cific. That, my good reader, was the cradle of Homoeo- pathy. Hahnemann and his pupils and disciples pro- 19 ceeded to construct a new Materia Medica, by expert menting upon themselves with full doses. This has been the pure homoeopathic method of obtaining such knowledge ever since. This new, re-constructed, reformed Materia Medica is the true glory of Homoeo- pathy. Of its priceless worth our Allopathic friends have no conception. It is to them a vast and shapeless chaos of material, which they had rather ridicule than study. It has indeed its faults, its errors, its fallacies, its fantasies, all of which may be eliminated by philoT sophic analysis, leaving a residuum of incalculable value. From this great Materia Medica nine-tenths of our practice is drawn. It is no child's play, no apprentice's labor, no first-class student's work, to study, to under- stand and to practice Homoeopathy. Cultivated minds have sometimes shrunk away from the task, and affected an incredulity they were too intelligent to feel. INDIRECT HOMOEOPATHY. 1 shall now proceed to demonstrate that a very large remaining part of Allopathic practice, namely, that known as counter-irritation or revulsion, is also essen- tially homoeopathic in its action. When a drug is given to a sick man, no matter what the physician proposes in his own mind to do, the upshot of his practice is, that he produces an artificial disease somewhere in the body. If it is a similar disease in the diseased point, he practices homoeopathically and cures his patient. If it is a dissim- ilar disease in the same point, he practices allopathically or anti-pathically, and does not cure him. But suppose he cannot or does not reach or act upon the diseased point at all. He then produces an artificial disease in some distant and healthy point. What relation does this- 20 distant disease bear to the existing one? If it is an altogether different disease, it just inflicts so much addi- tional suffering and injury on the patient. A cramp in the stomach cannot cure a cough ; a hemorrhage from the kidneys cannot cure a neuralgia ; a convulsion cannot cure a sore throat, and so on and so on. But a similar disease in a healthy point, may, by reflex action, sympa- thy or nervous transmission, cure a similar disease natu- rally existing in some other point. Let us illustrate this matter. A blister to the skin frequently is advantageous in certain stages of pneumonia, inflammation of the brain, bowels, etc. The value of mustard plasters is known to every body. How do they act? The common theory is, that they detract nervous and vascular supply from the diseased internal point towards the surface irritated — that there is a transfer of disease from the centre to the circumference. Now this supposed derivation is all sheer hypothesis. Pereira, a very high Allopathic authority, pronounces it to be "perfectly gratuitous and incapable of proof." The truth is precisely the opposite. They reflect their surface-irritation over to the inflamed organ* and cure it homceopathically. Dr. Wm. Stokes, one of the greatest Old School writers, acknowledges that "a part at least of the utility of blisters is owing to the direct stimulation conveyed to the capillaries of the diseased tissue. They are essentially stimulants." No other explanation than this is needed. Let us watch nature and deduce our philosophy from her beautiful processes. Burns, which are accidental blisters, frequently produce internal inflammations. An extensive burn on the abdomen will cause inflammation and ulceration of the bowels — on the chest, it will inflame 21 the lungs; on the head and face, the brain. So of all irritations ; they are reflected from point to point in sympathetic relationship. The cold douche to the sur- face, contracting the cutaneous capillaries, repeats its impression, by nervous transmission, on the visceral capillaries, and so arrests internal hemorrhages, etc. The organic state produced in one point, is reproduced or repeated in others. The irritated surface reflects its own state over to the point naturally diseased, and this reflected stimulation is equivalent to a direct cauterization, or to the action of a drug specific to the point. Purgatives, by irritating a vast tract of mucous membrane, will relieve, or at least palliate, upon this principle, a great number of internal diseases. This is indirect, sympa- thetic or transpositive Homoeopathy. The homoeopathic law is at the bottom of all such cures. While thus teaching that there is but one philosophy of cure — that the key to Homoeopathy is also the key to every thing that is good and useful in Allopathy — and that the homoeopathic law underlies all rational medicine as its true foundation, and has never been understood in its whole length and breadth, and power, by either its enemies or its friends, I would not have my reader to suppose that it is immaterial whether one practices one system or the other. The superiority of Homoeopathy to the old practice cannot well be estimated or described. The difference between them is like that between silver and gold. Our law of cure surrounds us with a new atmosphere of light, beauty and order. Our Materia Medica is rich in therapeutic resources. We have scores of wonderful specifics which accomplish for us what we wish, without resorting to the coarse, cumbrous, complex and often injurious appliances of the Old School, even 22 though the latter have the homoeopathic law as the secret of their occasional success. There is one thing, however^ we demand as our right. If at any time our finer and purer homoeopathic measures should fail, owing either to the infancy of our art, to the imperfection of our knowl- edge, or to the peculiar difficulties of our case, we are warranted in resorting, without being guilty of any inconsistency, to any other medicines or measures which we honestly believe to have a genuine homoeopathic foun- dation for their remedial value. Our practice, then, can be misunderstood only by the very ignorant or the very uncharitable. ANTICIPATIVE HOMCEOPATHY. This class of homoeopathic measures is rather small at present, but is probably capable of very great enlarge- ment. Vaccination is an artificial disease, of which the essential element is a sore or pustule, precisely resem- bling- that of small pox. The effect on the system mys- teriously lasts a great while, and prevents or excludes the poison of small pox from affecting the protected individual. Belladonna produces many of the symptoms of scarlet fever ; and it is regarded by many as a valua- ble preventive of that terrible disease — that is, keep the Child under the influence of the belladonna poison, and it excludes for the time being the scarlet fever poison. To paint the sound skin around an inflammation with caustic, iodine, etc., to prevent its extension, is also an example of anticipative Homoeopathy. But the best illustration is found in the use of Quinine for the cure of intermit- tent fevers. Dr. Wood, (Allopathic,) explains its action in this manner : Quinine produces certain morbid impres- sions in the same nervous centres through which the natural causes of intermittent operate. If the Quinine- 23 poisoning is effected during the interval of the parox- ysm, the malarial poison is excluded from operating on the nervous centres, and no paroxysm occurs. This production of a similar artificial disease before hand, to prevent or exclude one which is threatened, is anticipa- tive Homoeopathy. It may furnish the clue to the future discovery of many prophylactics. A WORD ABOUT THE THEORY OF HOM(EOPATHY. We naturally propose to ourselves an explanation of every thing we see. We love to understand causes. Alas ! how seldom are we gratified. The greater, the grander the fact, the less do we know of the causes of it. Life and all its phenomena is a world of mystery, of whose causes we know nothing. The apple falls to the ground, but we can discover no cause for gravitation. The needle trembles toward the pole, but we cannot tell why iron is magnetic. We can assign no adequate reason for any one of the thousand wonders of chemical affinity. So of the Homoeopathic law. But the facts remain always the same, and we can use them as we please. "Like cures like," is as fixed a fact as any thing in physics. Why like should cure like may never be fully known. Still, our homoeopathic philosophers have made many brave and ingenious attempts to solve the enigma. The literature of the school, French, German and English, swarms with theories and speculations on this inexhausti- ble theme. I wrote a book myself on the subject, a dozen years ago, and I have now a still more elaborate and recondite theory to broach, if I thought it would be worth the while. But there is no use of it. Homoeo- pathy is entirely founded on fact. The law, the Materia Medica, the dose, the application, the success, have no foundation but facts. The world has theorized long 24 enough, especially the medical world. Homoeopathy sets the true, practical example. It is a branch of the Positive Philosophy. SOMETHING ABOUT THE DOSE. Ah, yes ! What about the dose ? chuckles the unbe- liever. Indeed the small dose, the apparent inadequacy of the means to effect the end in view, is the great stumbling-block in the way pf the New School. And still, the dose, like the law itself, is not a matter to be settled by theory and speculation ; but a mere matter of fact and experiment. The principle says nothing about dose. He who gives an ounce of epsom salts in a case of diarrhea, prescribes homceopathically just as truly as if he gave the same substance in the hundred millionth of a grain. Hahnemann and his disciples began by giving large doses, but produced such aggravations that they were obliged to diminish them greatly. They pushed the attenuating process, as most of us believe, to an unnecessary and even absurd degree. Still, it is a ques- tion only to be determined by experiment. I prefer to use our medicines in very small but still appreciable quantities — quantities which would have no influence whatever in health, or on any part of the system except upon the diseased point. The whole scale, however, from the crude natural substances up to the highest infinitesi- mals, should be open to the choice and the practice of every candid and sensible man. Several general truths may be mentioned as tending to make the small dose of Homoeopathy more credible or plausible to those who demand something more than the simple trial of it in disease. All the great operations of nature, those of heat, light, chemical action, etc.; and those also of the human frame, 25 particularly the wonderful modifications of the nervous fluid, are carried on by microscopic, atomic and infinitesi- mal movements, almost transcending our imagination. Our medicines, vastly attenuated by trituration and succussion, present an immeasurably greater surface for action, becoming thereby more electric or magnetic, or at any rate more subtle, penetrating and permeating ; so that they effect a more perfect contact with the deepest recesses of the vital tissues, where the atomic, microscopic and infinitesimal operations of life are taking place. Matter is indestructible, and no matter how far the subdivision be extended, every drop of the alcohol used as a vehicle must be pervaded with the infinitesimal atoms of the drug. There are many natural agencies, malaria, effluvia, etc., which cannot be seen, felt, weighed or analysed by man, which yet produce the most powerful morbid impressions on the system ; so gradually and insensibly too, that man at the time is wholly unconscious of their action. It is not unreasonable to suppose that homoeo- pathic drugs may act in a similar manner — nothing being felt by the patient beyond the gradual removal of the disease. Homoeopathic writers have illustrated this difficult point with great learning and ingenuity. Some of their more intelligent opponents know that their objections are really answered, and they are secretly put to the blush ; but they cannot forego the malicious pleasure of keeping the " small dose " before the world as the essen- tial part of Homoeopathy. Believers in Homoeopathy are, however, either persons of education and culture, or they are people of that strong, practical habit of thought which looks straight forward to the result — the effect — 26 without troubling itself to understand the causes or the means. LIMITATIONS OF THE HOM(EOPATHIC LAW. There are several natural limitations to the operation of pure Homoeopathy, which it is necessary to remember, before denouncing the practice of professed Homceopath- ists in certain cases. 1st. We only profess to be able to cure those morbid states which we can imitate on the healthy body. We have discovered no drug which will produce any thing resembling a deposit of tubercles in the lungs, fatty depos- its in the tissues of the heart, cancerous degeneration of the breast, etc. We shall no doubt add greatly to our remedial discoveries in the future ; but at present there are many morbid conditions which we cannot produce by drugs, and for which, consequently, we have no homoeopathic specific. 2d. Some diseases are naturally incurable — not only the above but many others — such as ossification of the heart, softening of the brain, aneurism of the aorta, epilepsy, certain forms of paralysis and dropsy, etc., etc. 3d. Life itself is dependent upon certain conditions, the presence of certain natural elements and certain physio- logical stimuli acting on those elements. We must remove so far as possible the causes of disease. We must give food and air and water. Sleep also is a vital necessity. Sometimes it is a mere question of sleep or death. If we cannot remove by our specifics the morbid condition which prevents sleep, before the vital powers would become exhausted, we must administer opiates, or do any thing which will produce an artificial sleep. Some- times, also, the excitability of the system has been so greatly exhausted by protracted or prostrating diseases, 27 that a bottle of wine is worth all the medicine in the world. Now, in such cases as these, with patients afflicted with strange and incurable diseases, or with those for which no homoeopathic specific has ever been discovered, what is the Homoeopathic physician to do? Is he to give them up into Allopathic hands, under the plea that he only practices medicine where he can make the homoeopathic law available ? Not if he is a man of scientific culture and independent character. He will do the best he can under the circumstances. He will palliate by every means in his power ; and it is astonishing sometimes what relief homoeopathic remedies can give, even when they cannot cure. But, he need not confine himself to homoeopathic remedies. His treatment should be empirical — any thing and every thing which promises to do his patient any good. If he falls short here of the most intelligent and wide-extended eclecticism, he is ignorant of his duty or faithless to his trust. FINAL DEFINITION. Homoeopathy, therefore, is a reform in the central and main field of medical practice — a reform effected by the discovery of a great therapeutic law, " similia similibus curantur" and by the construction of a new Materia Med- ica, which reveals to us the disease-producing properties of drugs. A Homoeopathic physician is one who uses the surgical, obstetrical, mechanical and chemical measures of the Old School ; who, in the vital or dynamic sphere, is guided by the Homoeopathic Law ; and who, beyond its natural and necessary limitations, is an empiric and eclectic in the most liberal and enlightened sense of these words. 28 ALLOPATHIC OBJECTIONS NOTICED. What have the "regular physicians" to say against this rational and beautiful philosophy and practice of medicine ? How do they endeavor to blind themselves to its real merits and the public to its further reception? The fact is, that nine times out of ten they know little or nothing about it, and have neither the time nor the dis- position to learn any thing more. They think that Prof. Andral and Prof. Simpson and Dr. Holmes, etc., have examined the question fairly, decided point blank against it, and that it should now be laid on the shelf. More- over, they are getting along very comfortably as they are. Why should they fluster themselves and their little circles, lose some of their practice, alienate their brother-doctors and commit themselves to a new doctrine, which cer- tainly has had its fair share of trials, persecutions and misrepresentations to encounter? Innovaters need not count on "the powers that be" to assist them in their labors. Some acute writer has remarked, that if it were not for the restless spirit of inquiry and progress existing in the laity, there never would have been a single permanent reform in law, government, theology or medicine. Still they must have some answer to give this inquiring public, when it presses them closely on the homoeopathic question. In their published expositions, they generally attack the visionary theories of Hahnemann with great fury. If Hahnemannism were Homoeopathy, the system would have long ago been demolished. But Hahnemann- ism is a man of straw. Homoeopathy is a different thing altogether, and demands a very different kind of answer — not yet given. To the public our opponents make many objections. The "small dose" comes in for the main 29 share of ridicule and incredulity. The story of little Johnny Smith, who swallowed all the sugar pellets in his mother's box, without being hurt, is, of course, never omitted. Then, its all "imagination," although babies and horses are cured by it as well or better than the most imaginative young or old ladies. Then, its all " diet," although it is well known that we always allow a more liberal diet than the Old School physicians. Then, its all "nature," but the wonder is that Nature should always practice in partnership with us and not with them. But all these things are shallow and silly — quite beneath the dignity of the present argument. Our answer to all this is the following. WHAT HOMOEOPATHY HAS ACCOMPLISHED. It has spread over the civilized world and has been especially favored by the most influential and intelligent classes of society. It has schools, hospitals, journals, dis- pensaries, associations of all kinds ; and it numbers its practitioners by thousands, and its patients by millions. It has given a new and vast impetus to the study of the true action of drugs by experimentation with them on the healthy system. It has thus re-organized, we might almost say, created a Materia Medica, a glorious monument of learning, industry and self-sacrifice. It has rendered Pathology the highest service by mak- ing that great branch of medical science truly practical ; for an exact parallel, functional and organic, between the phenomena of diseases and drugs, is necessary to the scientific selection of homoeopathic medicines. By its great therapeutic law, it has introduced new light, order, beauty and efficiency into the theory and practice of medicine. 30 It has cured thousands of cases of chronic disease beyond the reach of Allopathic art, and has treated all the acute diseases with admirable success. It has met all the great epidemics, and proved itself always superior to the Old System. I was converted from the Old to the New School by witnessing the tri- umphs of Homoeopathy in the treatment of the Asiatic Cholera in the terrible epidemics of 1849-50-51. In Yellow Fever its success was equally surprising. Dr. Davis and myself treated over a thousand cases at Natchez in 1853-5, with a mortality of less than 7 per cent. On account of this great triumph, we were elected Physi- cians and Surgeons of the Mississippi State Hospital, (an old and well endowed Allopathic institution,) and our reports from that institution were further confirmatory of the superiority of the New System. It has saved thousands of cases from surgical opera- tions, and has introduced new comfort and safety into the lying-in room of woman. It has been a blessing to children and to mothers incal- culable. It has been found as useful in the diseases of animals as of men, and many veterinary institutions have been established for its practice. Finally, it has shortened the average duration of dis- ease, diminished the expense of treatment, economized the vital resources of the patient, and delivered its friends from the frequently baneful and long-lasting effects of enormous doses of medicine. ELEMENTS OF RECONCILIATION. With all these inherent advantages and elements of success, who believes that Homoeopathy can ever be 31 destroyed by any thing its enemies may say or do ? On the other hand, what a pity it is. that with so much neu- tral ground to stand upon, and so much real harmony beneath the outward show of total dissimilarity: what a pity it is, that there should be two great rival schools of medicine, jarring and jangling, and foolishly abusing each other! It is the fault of both. Hahnemann was a great and high spirited "regular physician," and he published his first homoeopathic teachings in the best medical journal in Europe. He was met by that storm of oppo- sition, ridicule, and contempt with which mediocre con- servatism always assails the Columbuses, the Luthers, the Harveys, the Jenners, the Fultons of our race. He became exasperated and dogmatic, and henceforth aspired to found a New School, as different from the other as pos- sible. No great reformer ever imposed the despotism of the master so thoroughly on his disciples. This genera- tion, however, is getting rid of it ; Hahnemann is falling back to a subordinate place ; and Homoeopathy reformed, emancipated, and rationalized, is established on a stronger and more scientific basis than ever. Whilst the Homoeopathists are no longer Hahnemann- ians, the Old School is approaching to Homoeopathy with rapid strides. They have decreased their doses in the most exemplary manner. They have acquired more knowledge of the natural history of disease, and more respect for a purely expectant medicine. Their acknowl- edgment of the homoeopathic law is extending, and volumes of good Homoeopathy might be picked out of their published practice. They have even formed socie- ties to ascertain the true effect of drugs by experiment- ing on themselves, in imitation of Hahnemann and his disciples. Their great leaders are questioning all the old 32 settled principles and practice of Allopathy. The lancet is almost wholly abandoned by them. They denounce the abuses of quinine and opium and calomel and purga- tives almost as energetically as we do. The spirit of innovation is doing a good work. Faith in their own prin- ciples and practice is declining every where Dr. Holmes, the great humorist and opponent of Homoeopathy, (him- self an Allopothic professor,) declares that :f all the medi- cines in the world, except wine and opium, were thrown into the sea, it would be better for men and only worse for the fishes. The closer our approximation to the truth on any sub- ject, the more thoroughly we shall agree in opinion. There are no skeptics or heretics in mathematics or astronomy. It follows, that all the discrepancies of opin- ion which men entertain, arise from ignorance of natural laws, from merely partial glimpses of them, or from mis- conceptions of their true meaning and extent. The present chaos of the mental and moral world is to be remedied, like the old terrestrial chaos, by the creation and influx of light. Knowledge is the true and only healer of dissensions. The powerful ferment of thought which characterizes the present century, will eventuate in a better order of things, and the establishment of the true fundamental principles of theology, government, science and art. For medicine, too, and medical men, there is a coming millenium and the reign of brotherly love.